Tro­phy to un­likely Tawa

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT -

Tawa AFC’S first team se­cured a huge con­fi­dence boost for the new Cen­tral League cam­paign by win­ning the Hil­ton Pe­tone Cup on April 1.

The pres­ti­gious pre-sea­son tro­phy was used as a valu­able warm-up to the new sea­son, of­ten at­tract­ing the re­gion’s best sides, coach Maarten Romijn said.

Tawa had not shown much in the early rounds, with a squad de­pleted by in­juries and ab­sences.

They went into the HP final – against an ex­cel- lent Olympic side – shorn of eight reg­u­lar play­ers. The odds against a win at Me­mo­rial Park widened fur­ther when cap­tain Steve Romijn and striker Todd Painter went down with ham­string strains in­side the first five min­utes.

Olympic dom­i­nated the first half for long pe­ri­ods but Tawa cus­to­dian Lance Ra­maek­ers made sev­eral key saves to keep his side in the game. In the sec­ond spell, Tawa played with more con­fi­dence and the mid­field be­gan to get on top, Romijn said.

With 20 min­utes to go Scott Cameron latched on to a loose ball and opened the scor­ing for the reds, with Mike Ra­maek­ers dou­bling their lead min­utes later.

The win was an ex­am­ple of the team spirit Tawa look for­ward to demon­strat­ing in the up­com­ing Cen­tral League sea­son, Romijn said.

‘‘An ex­am­ple of this was Daniel Cody, who has re­cov­ered from a knee op­er­a­tion ear­lier this year and played 80 min­utes in the final.’’

Photo: JAN LANG

Vic­to­ri­ous: Tawa

AFC cel­e­brate a win that none but their most ar­dent sup­port­ers would have be­lieved pos­si­ble, over highly-fan­cied Olympic on April 1.

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